March 3, 1920 to April 27, 2013|
Sylvia Ng was born in Toi San, China. Her name was Liu Knok Sem, second to the youngest of nine children.
She was able to enjoy a relatively normal childhood in her village attending the local Toi San Academy where she excelled as a student.
Due to the extreme financial hardships of the time prior to the invasion of China, she was slated to be sold off to a wealthy family as domestic help. It was by the providence of her oldest sister that had previously immigrated to the United States and had the financial ability to purchase her back that led to her also immigrating to the US. She landed in Treasure Island, CA in 1939 and stayed there while being processed for entry into America. After her internment she lived and worked in San Francisco with her benefactor sister in a garment factory. There she honed her skills as a seamstress and became a very talented dressmaker, knitter and crochet artist. One day she was summoned to the Ng Family Benevolence Headquarters in San Francisco where she was socially introduced to a young man from Yuma, AZ in search of a bride. That young man, Gim Pong Ng had his choice from a half dozen young healthy females for his bride. After returning to Yuma, young Gim Pong made his decision and let his selection be known to the patriarch of the Ng Family Benevolent Assn. and shortly after which young Liu Knok Sem was on a train on her way to Yuma, AZ for her wedding.
She and Gim Pong married on Dec. 6, 1941 on that day the beginning of the rest of her life started. Her life was as full as anyone could ever wish for. War time Yuma was bustling and Gim Pong's family had a grocery store that provided supplies for the war effort and for Yuma's thriving downtown community. It was then that she had been given the English name Sylvia by her father-in-laws friend and counselor the Honorable Judge Henry C. Kelly. She loved her new name, family and life. She thrived in Yuma as an important contributor to her family's business, her many new friends and raising her children. The war being over she was content to concentrate on helping run the family's business and raise her children. She was a very active member of a small Chinese community and also transended into the dominant communities of the time. She was very much a part of the vibrant downtown community. Sylvia and Gim Pong retired from their grocery business in 1979 and were then able to spend a wonderful retirement visiting with friends and family for over 30 years. She was preceded in death by Gim Pong in 2010 and will now be reunited forever after the most perfect life together.
Sylvia was preceded in death by her eldest son, Harven. She is survived by son, Paul Hardy (Shirley); numerous grandchildren and great-grandchildren and many nieces and nephews.
Viewing will be from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. Friday, May 10th at Johnson Mortuary, where services will be at 10 a.m. Saturday, May 11th. The family requests that in lieu of flowers that donations be made in Sylvia's name to the
in Phoenix, AZ.
Published in The Yuma Sun from May 5 to May 6, 2013